Until Monday I was “that guy” fully believing Apple wouldn’t introduce a “watch” – maybe some kind of wearable (I had imagined a slap-wrist bracelet thing with Apple awesomeness) – but not a watch. I felt that (a) some kind of “remote extension” to the iPhone/iPad made a ton of sense but (b) “nobody” wants a watch. And then team Apple strutted their beautiful stuff, and I thought “gee willikers, at $99 that could just be a hugely adopted mainstream device.” But when the $349 price tag appeared, I scoffed and hemmed and hawed (note: no, I didn’t actually haw).
I woke up this morning thinking a little different. At $349 they might just have created another phenom.
At $99, I’ve realized, it may have been ready for mass adoption, but then – the masses may well have not adopted it. It’d be up for comparison with the various crud coming out of generic manufacturers. But not at $349.
What I believe Mr Cook and his cadre have created, at this much higher price point, is another high-falutin product. One owned by those with disposable income, enough that they’d “toss it away” on a “gimmicky” product. One with built-in scarcity.
In other words: they are re-creating want in a product, maybe even almost-need to those who can’t just have it.
Unlike the iPad, whose value I saw upon announcement, the Apple Watch is not so clearly framed in my mind. I can’t yet visualize how I’d use it on a day-to-day basis, which always slows down my likelihood to adopt.
But, I can now see the want that consumers will inevitably feel. The pride with which the early adopters will strut down the streets, wearing obviously too-short sleeves to ensure that everyone around will see they were first. And one day it’ll drop to $299, then eventually some much more accessible price, perhaps even as low as $99 for a Watch Mini in a few years. Smart.
If they are going after the “I am richer and cooler and edgier than you plebeians” market they should be charging much more. I get your point but $350 is not going to make it exclusive enough.
The price point is high enough considering it is an extremely expensive peripheral for your ipad/iphone. At that price point it will make the more price sensitive stick with their Google devices, as they will not fork over the $ to swap out their tablet for an iPad AND purchase the Apple Watch. However, at $249, it is ALSO low enough to ensure wider adoption by the Apple faithful who already standardized on iPad, as well as those who are not price sensitive. So, it will also serve to increase lock-in around Apple’s walled garden.
They wouldn’t want to go much higher for a device that has a natural life time of ~3 years. As the miniaturization tech and battery tech continues to improve, this device will be “large and clunky” and out of date by then.